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Embarking A Breeding Project

Discussion in 'Pigeons and Doves' started by cochinGurl, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. cochinGurl

    cochinGurl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Embarking On A Breeding Project...


    I am proud to announce I have finally officially embarked on a Project I've been planning quite a while. I've got a brand new loft and adequate space to start my breeding. First, some back story to explain why I'm mixing breeds. I know many pigeon keepers are against it. I have a reason to do it, weather it's a valid reason however I'll leave up to interpretation, but it's reason enough for me :D


    The reason is an emotional one I suppose, as it ties in with my grandfather and how I got into pigeons.

    My Grandfather was born in Serbia, and started his flock at the age of 10 when a friend of his father gave him several pairs of Serbian Highfliers. He tended to his growing flock throughout his youth. He got married and had children, though times were tough he managed to care for his family as well as his prized birds. Things got harder and harder though and he decided to bring the family to America, to join a friend that had already immigrated.

    Of corse he wouldn't leave his beloved line of pigeons he had worked so hard to cultivate. But the plane did not allow pigeons on the plane, so he hid as many pigeon eggs as he could in his and his family's pockets, trying their hardest to keep the eggs warm and unbroken. Once they had arrived at the friends house (who also was luckily a "pigeon guy") he put the eggs under the friends broody pairs.

    I'm not sure exactly how many birds he got from those fosters,(there's always been a bit of a language barrier between us haha) but apparently it was enough to start a new flock. By the time I knew him, he had over 100 pigeons living in a loft that took up more than half of his small back yard in Burbank California.

    Every time I came to visit him ( I grew up and live in Washington) he would talk about giving me pigeons, he was so eager to get me started with a flock of my own. I was quite young at the time, and since I already had chickens I wasn't allowed to have any pigeons because I had "enough birds".

    Finally at age 14 I pleaded my way into getting one pair from him. My father and I took a road trip down and I returned with two beautiful Serbian Highfliers. However it turned out they were both males. (I had wanted young birds and payed the price haha) I became completely enamored with the pigeons and wound up eventually re homing my chickens so I could have more pigeons. One of the two Highfliers was taken by a hawk, and I got the remaining one (Dale) a lovely roller hen, with whom he had several babies.


    Tragically, my beloved mentor and favorite pigeon guy died before I could get any more of his birds. I was heart broken over this obviously. The care of his birds fell to a very incompetent nephew of his. Under his care, more then half the birds have died due to moisture related issues. He hasn't fixed the leak in the roof because it hardly ever rains in LA and usually the leak "isn't a problem" and he won't give or sell me any birds because he "doesn't have enough" to give me any.. I digress.

    So I have one pure bred Serbian Highflier to work with, one of his grand children, and one of his great grand children. Until recently I have only had space for them and their mates, no room for more babies. I'm 18 now and I've got a much better pigeon housing situation where I've started my project.

    Dale and his west of England tumbler(?) mate have just weaned their first baby (his roller mate was taken by a hawk years ago)

    His grand child Sebastian who at the moment is paired to a white homer hen has two new babies (four days old today)

    Sebastian's child from his last batch a year ago is ready to pair up as soon as I find a suitable mate for her.



    So: what is my goal for this project?


    Short Term: (the next year or so)
    Just get some more babies that are descended from Dale (and therefore from my grandfathers line) to work with. Once I have more birds from my existing pairings, I'll re home the tumbler and homer hens, and re pair those cocks to hens that are more similar to Serbian Highfliers.


    Long term:
    Select for birds that look the most like the Serbian Highfliers, breed them to another kind crested highflier, and get the crest and high-flying behavior back into my line. Ultimately I'd like to get more Serbians to cross in to bring in more of those traits, but they are a difficult breed to find..



    It's just important to me that I have birds descended from my grandpop. My reasons are sentimental, but I feel the cross breeding is warranted in this situation. I want to carry on the with the birds that were his life's work, in some form at least. It's also a connection no matter how tenuous to my heritage. He would want it that way.


    I welcome any feed back, and would be delighted to get suggestions about what other breeds to cross in or just suggestions in general. I hope some of you have found this post interesting!
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    I admire your goal of continuing on with your grandfather's line of birds, but why not get other Serbian high flyers to breed to the present descendants from his family?
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. cochinGurl

    cochinGurl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That would be ideal, but I have not managed to find any, I put up craigslist adds and googled but haven't yet found anyone who breeds them. I will continue my search though
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Type serbianhighflyer.com in your search bar. When I did this, pages relevant to your search appeared.
     
  5. laughingdog

    laughingdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Your desired goal sounds like you should: keep breeding only the lone male serb to each new hen he and a crested muffed high flier, or tumbler produce, down through each generation with each offspring hen of. quickest way to restore full blood line after several generations. dont bother breeding or letting breed rest, n just fly n enjoy them, letting them fosters for eggs n squeakers (squab term only for ones pumped for harvest at an eating age just before flight) of dale and each generation grand daughter.

    if i knew more n purer serbs were what were looking for, id have bought some off ommish guy at a local sale. shipping maybe murder, but if he has even decent quality ones (he only charges 2-5 dollars apiece), n i have room to hold for faverable conditions,you want me to look for some? his birds best health quality ive seen personally (better than mine i admit), n look good, but sometimes mixes of couple old world performance high flying tumblers he keeps in those two lofts.
    quicker easier way to find pure breeder fliers of, is to go on "pigeontalk.com", and facebook groups, most of which will be newyork, up north or midwest areas aside from there.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2015
  6. cochinGurl

    cochinGurl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for your reply, and the tip about breeding his offspring back to him. I had the pleasure of bringing home a new Serbian hen this past week! I have her in quarantine for the time being. She's a beautiful red hen with pearl eyes and a white tail bar. She cost me 50$ but I'm thrilled to have gotten her!
    The recent loft renavations plus her have pretty much drained my extra funds for the moment but I will definetly be looking to buy some more Serbians in a few months.

    Laughingdog I am definitely very interested in Serbians from this Amish guy! That's very kind of you to offer to get some for me. I am definitely interested, I'll do some research on shipping, you live in TN, yes? I have never shipped or been shipped birds before.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. WaterfowlWierdo

    WaterfowlWierdo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thats great what your doing in honor of your grandpa. My grandpa tells me tons of stories of when he was younger about his Birmingham Roller Pigeons, and how his favorites were pure white and pure reds. So now I have 2 pairs of Birminghams, and 2 are solid red, and the other two have sources of white that i will breed for later.
     
  8. laughingdog

    laughingdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Doesnt seem needed to bother shipping these here with the hen you found. maybe breed him to each female gen thats tested to adult standards of what he is (maybe find someone to personally asses traits of male so can mark down n make sure young getting his genetics), n then create same or her traits in her n each gen male offspring. just so then can later cross down line if anything again unforseen happens. Use bands and records so know whats what and who is who n when was what. some breeders mark a tail feather in way that identifies it n leads better at record keeping etc.just remember pigeons not as sexually monogomus as said n they seem (noanimals are..), so seperate sexes till breeding, n/or seperate pairs month before breeding.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015
  9. steve36263

    steve36263 New Egg

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    great story you go for it
     
  10. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    Awesome story!
     

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